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Legal Resources | Health and Safety Code |  HS  1373.620  

California COBRA Program   

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(a) (1) At least 60 days prior to the plan renewal date, a health care service plan that does not otherwise issue individual health care service plan contracts shall issue the notice described in paragraph (2) to any subscriber enrolled in an individual health benefit plan contract issued pursuant to Section 1373.6 that is not a grandfathered health plan.

(2) The notice shall be in at least 12-point type and shall include all of the following:

(A) Notice that, as of the renewal date, the individual plan contract will not be renewed.

(B) The availability of individual health coverage through Covered California, including at least all of the following:

(i) That, beginning on January 1, 2014, individuals seeking coverage may not be denied coverage based on health status.

(ii) That the premium rates for coverage offered by a health care service plan or a health insurer cannot be based on an individual?s health status.

(iii) That individuals obtaining coverage through Covered California may, depending upon income, be eligible for premium subsidies and cost-sharing subsidies.

(iv) That individuals seeking coverage must obtain this coverage during an open or special enrollment period, and a description of the open and special enrollment periods that may apply.

(b) (1) At least 60 days prior to the plan renewal date, a health care service plan that issues individual health care service plan contracts shall issue the notice described in paragraph (2) to a subscriber enrolled in an individual health benefit plan contract issued pursuant to Section 1366.35 or 1373.6 that is not a grandfathered health plan.

(2) The notice shall be in at least 12-point type and shall include all of the following:

(A) Notice that, as of the renewal date, the individual plan contract will not be renewed.

(B) Information regarding the individual health plan contract that the health plan will issue as of January 1, 2014, which the health plan has reasonably concluded is the most comparable to the individual?s current plan. The notice shall include information on premiums for the possible replacement plan and instructions that the individual can continue their coverage by paying the premium stated by the due date.

(C) Notice of the availability of other individual health coverage through Covered California, including at least all of the following:

(i) That, beginning on January 1, 2014, individuals seeking coverage may not be denied coverage based on health status.

(ii) That the premium rates for coverage offered by a health care service plan or a health insurer cannot be based on an individual?s health status.

(iii) That individuals obtaining coverage through Covered California may, depending upon income, be eligible for premium subsidies and cost-sharing subsidies.

(iv) That individuals seeking coverage must obtain this coverage during an open or special enrollment period, and a description of the open and special enrollment periods that may apply.

(c) No later than September 1, 2013, the department, in consultation with the Department of Insurance, shall adopt uniform model notices that health plans shall use to comply with subdivisions (a) and (b) and Sections 1366.50, 1373.622, and 1399.861. Use of the model notices shall not require prior approval by the department. The model notices adopted by the department for purposes of this section shall not be subject to the Administrative Procedure Act (Chapter 3.5 (commencing with Section 11340) of Part 1 of Division 3 of Title 2 of the Government Code). The director may modify the wording of these model notices specifically for the purposes of clarity, readability, and accuracy.

(d) The notices required in this section are vital documents, pursuant to clause (iii) of subparagraph (B) of paragraph (1) of subdivision (b) of Section 1367.04, and shall be subject to the applicable requirements of that section.

(e) For purposes of this section, the following definitions shall apply:

(1) "Covered California" means the California Health Benefit Exchange established pursuant to Section 100500 of the Government Code.

(2) "Grandfathered health plan" has the same meaning as that term is defined in Section 1251 of PPACA.

(3) "PPACA" means the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Public Law 111-148), as amended by the federal Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010 (Public Law 111-152), and any rules, regulations, or guidance issued pursuant to that law.

(Amended by Stats. 2013, Ch. 441, Sec. 6.)